Apr 20, 2023 - Real Estate

Developer wants to add apartments, offices to Cary's South Hills Mall

A rendering of a potential South Hills redevelopment, courtesy of Loden Properties

Cary's oldest shopping center is the latest in the Triangle to be reimagined as a multi-use development that places an emphasis on adding apartments and walkable amenities to what is now a car-centric shopping mall.

What's happening: Loden Properties, one of Raleigh's most active local developers, has filed a preliminary plan that would redevelop Cary's South Hills Mall & Plaza into a walkable grid system, with each block representing a potential phase of construction.

  • Loden's rezoning application is asking to build up to 1,750 apartment units as well as new office-and-retail space on the shopping center, which is largely dominated by parking spaces.
  • Henry Ward, a partner at Loden, told Axios that the full build out could take 15 to 20 years. The exact mix of office, residential and retail uses can be determined over time.

What they're saying: "Our main interest here is it is just an A-plus location," Ward said. "It is one of the most significant crossroads in North Carolina and arguably the southeast. To be able to control this much contiguous square footage is a tremendous opportunity."

Details: The property would also be home to a new sports and recreation center for the town of Cary.

  • The rec center would include 12 indoor basketball courts, multipurpose event space, a walking track and gym.
  • Loden bought the property with Chicago-based Northpond Partners in 2021 for nearly $40 million.
  • Ward said Loden would honor current leases but eventually will redevelop all existing buildings on the property.

The big picture: Nearly every older shopping center, from Durham's large Streets at Southpoint to University Place in Chapel Hill, is going through a process of re-imagining their futures — often with an eye toward including housing.

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